Identifying Toenail Fungus and What to Do About It

Identifying Toenail Fungus and What to Do About It

Posted by Apex Foot Health on 13th Jul 2023

Toenail fungus. It's embarrassing, an eyesore, and it could potentially be a sign of an underlying health issue.

However, toenail fungus isn't always easy to identify. There are many types of toenail fungi that can all appear differently on your nails. Other times, people who think they have toenail fungus actually don't—it's something else entirely.

Are you unsure of how to tell if you have toenail fungus or not? In this post, we're going to explain how to identify toenail fungus and what to do if you've got it. Read along to learn more!

Identifying Toenail Fungus

Close up of toes with Toenail Fungus

What makes identifying toenail fungus so tricky is that it can look different on each person. However, there are some symptoms of toenail fungus that could indicate that you have an infection, and these symptoms are easy to spot on your own.

Here's what you need to look for:

  • Thickened toenails
  • Change in shape or orientation of the nail
  • Discoloration
  • Foul odor
  • Crumbly or brittle nails
  • Debris buildup under the nail

If your toenails have one or more of these symptoms, you may have toenail fungus. But don't worry too much; in most cases, toenail fungus is only a condition that only affects a person cosmetically.

Toenail Fungus Treatment

tea tree oil that can be used to help treat toenail fungus

There are many different treatment options when it comes to toenail fungus. Some people cure their nails using simple at-home methods, but others may need to see a doctor for medication.

If your case of toenail fungus is mild, here are a few ways you can  treat the infection at home:

The  type of shoes you wear can help you combat foot fungus. When choosing new shoes, be critical of how breathable they are and whether moisture might get trapped inside.

It's also important to  always wear socks with your closed-toe shoes. If you have foot fungus and wear your shoes without socks, you'll transfer the fungus to your shoes. This means that even if you treat the infection, you could get it again from wearing your own shoes later on.

If you do decide to get your toenail fungus treated by a professional, you may be prescribed oral antifungal drugs. These drugs are popular because they tend to clear signs of infection much quicker than topicals do, and they help the nail to grow without furthering the infection.

A doctor might also suggest a medicated nail polish. You apply it to your infected nails and the area surrounding it, and the antifungal properties in the polish work to fight the problem.

There are also antifungal nail creams that can be prescribed. They work to seep into the hard nail surface and fight the infection from under the nail, effectively eliminating stubborn toenail fungus over time.

Know How to Tell if You Have Toenail Fungus

Toenail fungus is a condition that's self-diagnosable in most cases, but that doesn't make it any less embarrassing. Now that you know how to tell if you have toenail fungus, you can begin treatment and get closer to having healthy nails again!

Want to keep your feet happy and pain-free? Shop Apex Footwear to find a huge selection of orthotic footwear that's designed with your foot and toenail health in mind.